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All of us at Agent Inner Circle™ wish you and yours a joyous holiday season and a healthy and profitable 2008…

How to Triple the Commissions You Make From Every Client

I'm about to teach you one of the most important lessons you'll ever learn for success in real estate. It's easy, it's fast, and it works 100% of the time - if you give it just a little bit of focus and attention.

Here's what it's all about…

There's an insidious disease that has infiltrated our profession. It's a “mindset” ailment, perpetuated by most sales professions and it's responsible for costing agents millions of dollars in lost income and tragically failed businesses. I call it…

“SingleTransactionitis” (or “STI” for short)

What is STI and how does it work?

You spend a fortune in time, energy and money getting a client. And yet, once a client has been found, sold and closed, chances are you're back on the treadmill looking for the next deal in the same cold, harsh market.

If you're like most agents, you see one transaction as just “one client - one commission” not realizing the many ways you could be generating multiple transactions from each client. So you're constantly chasing one deal after another, not realizing the many ways that every “past” client could be bringing in 2, 3 or 4 “next” clients.

STI is a brutal scenario, forcing you to live a vicious cycle of high stress, feast-famine, hit and miss “constantly chasing the next deal” throughout your career. Don't feel too bad, because you're not alone - industry statistics say it's a cruel reality for 96% of all agents.

But a few smart, savvy agents practice real estate differently - and reap huge profits as a result. They understand that…

While “Average” Agents Generate a Client to Make a Sale…

Most agents measure their success by the number of transactions they've closed, or by gross dollar volume sold. Agents interested in creating consistent long-term profits also focus on the Lifetime Value of every client and every transaction they bring into their practice.

They realize that, by having a client or a listing, they now have a valuable asset to help generate more business in the form of buyer and seller attraction marketing, referrals, word of mouth and repeat business.

They are “making a sale to generate a client” because they know how to get the greatest Lifetime Value from the “transactional” and “back-end” of every relationship.

Do business with someone once and you might make $7,000 GCI. Employ the strategies for maximizing the Lifetime Value, and that $7,000 could turn in to $28,000 or more. Multiply that by the number of transactions you do each year, and it adds up to some pretty serious money.

So what is the “Lifetime Value” of a client?

You hear the term a lot, but few teaching it know how to back-it-up with real-world strategies. As a pure definition, Lifetime Value is the TOTAL dollar value every client and every affiliation brings to your practice over the lifetime of your relationship.

But it's more than an academic concept. It's about using simple marketing and prospecting systems to multiply your income with little or no extra work. Now that's what I call “Leverage.”

So let's get started building the Lifetime Value of your clients…and multiplying your income. Here are…

4 “VALUES” to Maximizing the Lifetime Value of Your Clients

Next time you generate a listing or a buyer, think about the following 4 ways in which you can maximize the income (the “Lifetime Value”) you make from every listing or buyer, and watch your production grow and grow.

The FIRST value is the “Single-Transaction Value” every client brings you. That's pretty easy to understand - you're already doing it. Problem is, for most agents the “single transaction value” IS their Lifetime Value.

The SECOND value is what I call the “Transaction Multiplier™” value. How does the “Transaction Multiplier™” work?

Just by creating a transaction (listing or buyer), you now have a valuable asset working to bring you more clients - if you know how to use it.

For example, taking a listing should bring you at least 2 new buyers, and frequently another listing in the area. How? By using important buyer and listing “magnet” strategies with every listing (or buyer)…

  • Use “800” hotline number SIGN TAGS or RIDERS (“Free Info About This Home - Call 800-xxx-xxxx”) providing information about the home. Program your hotline to page you or a buyer agent anytime someone calls for information on a home. This way you can immediately call the lead back and either talk about the home (very few buy the home they called about) or sell them another home.

  • Use Home Info Tubes with Flyers about the listed home and feature other homes on the back with similar features, area, size, etc. Use the same hotline strategy as above. You can also attract new listings by offering Consumer Guides for prospects interested in selling.

  • Run frequent classifieds or even display ads in proven publications. The secret is to understand the direct response strategies that make qualified buyers and sellers call. The “Classified Ad Secrets” book you got as a new member gift will give you everything you need to know.

  • Whether you're working a listing or with a buyer, make sure you use direct-response “just listed” and “just sold” communications throughout the area where you took/completed a transaction. I walk you through this strategy step-by-step in the 3-Steps System.

The THIRD value is the “Repeat Business” Value. Most agents neglect this value because they think it's going to be 4 to 6 years before the client buys or sells again, or that the buyer or seller will “think of them anyhow.”

If you're thinking this way (be honest, most agents do), you're suffering from “SingleTransactionitis” and it's costing you a fortune.

The average home ownership in this country is about 5.5 years. That's not a very long time for someone interested in long-term profits. And remember, 5.5 years is the “average.” Many homeowners sell much sooner.

But to make the repeat business value work, you need to look at your closings as the beginning of the relationship, not the end. If you have a true back-end system to deepen your relationship, continue bringing value month-after-month, and position yourself as a stand-out professional…

Who Do You Think Will Get the Client's
Business When it's Time to Buy or Sell??

The FOURTH value is the “Referral” value. Do you want to know something amazing about referrals?

They're easy to get once you know the secrets that cause people to refer. Clients who are acquired by a referral are very high quality (i.e. they are easier to work with, easier to close, and provide the fewest problems), and they refer others just like themselves.

AND, generating referrals requires much less money and work, thereby “netting” you more money and time.

But many agents naturally assume their friends and clients will automatically think of them - and they underestimate the type and frequency of contact required to deepen the relationship to a level worthy of referrals.

Remember, if someone is referring your services, they're putting THEIR reputation on the line too. They need to be 110% assured you are the #1 choice to provide the highest quality, best value and most competent services available.

That's why we created the Service For Life!™ direct-response prospecting and referral marketing system - to provide agents a ready-to-use marketing tool that acts as 7 tools in 1 to maximize the Lifetime Value of every client and every relationship you make in your business.

So if you find yourself endlessly “chasing” deals, or suffering from “SingleTransactionitis”, think about this article. Don't let your “next” deal walk out the door with your “last” deal.

Smart agents know the value of leveraging every transaction and cultivating relationships to provide a true “back-end” to their business.

So rather than playing the stressed-out, feast-famine “where's my next deal” game most agents endure, they have a long-term profit strategy that “steady's the ship” and brings them consistent business year after year.

Help Us Become the Most Valuable Network on Earth For Real Estate Professionals:

Real estate can be a tough business. Even top agents need a continuous flow of guidance, support and new ideas to keep going strong. When you share your tips, strategies and ideas for growing a more successful business, everyone wins! And if you submit an idea, you automatically become eligible to WIN a BRAND NEW iPod Nano. So don’t be shy: Tell us what you do to build and run your business successfully.

Save Time by Knowing the Difference Between a “Suspect” and a “Prospect”

“I did my early sales training selling insurance and working for Rank Xerox in Australia. That's where I learned something most Americans don't seem to understand: The difference between a Suspect and a Prospect..

“Just about everyone you meet is a suspect. They are all potential clients. When does a suspect become a prospect? When he/she realizes that they have a problem and want to do something about it!

“So why spend any time with a Suspect? Only to qualify them to see if they are a Prospect - i.e. that they DO have a problem and THEY WANT TO DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT. So spend a little time qualifying them first, and see which camp they are in - and ONLY when they admit that they DO have a problem AND are willing to do something about it do they become a Prospect, and worthy of your time, energy & money. Remember what they said to you, so you can quote it back to them (if needed) at some future stage to bring them back on track.

“If you discover they're not a Prospect (in their own eyes), why waste your time with them? This practice of qualification has saved me many hours.”

Quick Tip…

“In December, as a 'Holiday' gift, my real estate partner and I give our top clients an amaryllis plant, the kind that is still in the box. I don't wrap them, but do put a big bow and ribbon (from Party Mart, so not expensive) and attach our business cards. We personally deliver them. The clients LOVE it and the amaryllis is usually still blooming in March! With our monthly Service For Life newsletter in the meantime, this is how we are 'top-of-mind' during the winter.”

Submitted by Jane Davies, Realtor® (Thanks Jane!)

Get New Listings by Rescuing Clients from the “FSBO Blues”

“Go after FSBOS by offering to 'rescue' sellers from the 'FSBO-Blues'. Treat the 'ailment' like a paramedic would treat any temporary illness.

“Start with a list of symptoms: Extended market time, difficulty setting up appointments, expensive advertising, no-shows, low ball offers. If they are experiencing more than three of these, then they are definitely suffering from the 'FSBO Blues'.

“Once diagnosed, offer them your 'Treatment Plan'. For extended market time, apply your marketing plan, and offer a 'Prognosis' of an estimated sale in 45 days. You can throw in a 'booster shot' of a complimentary virtual tour of their home. For low ball offers, apply a CMA. For difficulty setting up appointments, apply professional scheduling services using your 800-numbers and capable office staff. You get the idea. This approach his can also work well for 'expireds'.

“Taking a unique approach to FSBOS will get you noticed. It's working for me!”

Horror Story: Staging Stake-Out

“I recently listed and staged a condo in a not-so-good neighborhood. Buyers often complained about the neighbor's music being too loud making the listing sit longer on the market than it should have.

“Well, it finally sold after several flips so I was excited to be able to finally clean out my staging items to use at other listings. I noticed the neighbors next door coming and going into their vehicle (parked right next to mine) and just smiled at them, glad to be finally wrapping up the sale.

“As I was hauling out chairs, tables, and tons of boxes of staging materials, making several trips back and forth to my car, I was suddenly surrounded by several police cars and 10 policeman with guns aimed. They told me to quickly go back into the unit and lock the door.

“As it turns out the neighbors were driving stolen vehicles and selling drugs. The police moved in and arrested everyone in the unit. They then came through my client's unit to check out the back yard making sure there wasn't anyone hiding back there.

“The whole thing happened so quickly I didn't have time to panic. Afterwards I realized how frustrated the police must have been trying to make the arrest with me in the way the whole time. They probably rolled their eyes and swore the whole time while I loaded my car. I had a good laugh after it was all over but was thankful it happened so quickly and without any incidents.

“Needless to say, I didn't send out any 'just sold' postcards to the neighborhood.”

Issue #1125